Say what you may about how it is implemented, but the Start Screen remains one of the most innovative features to come out of the House of Windows. And understandably Microsoft absolutely adores this option in its modern operating platforms.

Windows 8.1, however, takes the Start Screen up another level entirely.

The company has bundled in several new and enhanced features in the Start Screen of its latest operating system, and these include revamped customization options that provide users more power in personalizing their PC or mobile device.

And in a new blog post rolled out earlier today, Redmond was all praise for these new options.

Jennifer Shepherd of Microsoft explains that these customization options have been designed to ensure that the experience of the Start Screen feels more unified with the classic desktop:

“Now whenever I bring up my Start screen, it’s as if my tiles are floating gracefully in over my desktop background. Not only do I appreciate being able to customize my Start screen with my favorite images, but this experience also feels smoother and more cohesive to me.”

The company surely has not forgotten the desktop — this much seems certain:

“The consistent frame of reference of the background image seems to reduce the amount of mental adjustment I do when switching between the desktop and Start screen.”

Obviously, many of these features have been implemented to help users in their transition from desktop to the Modern UI, and vice versa.  According to Microsoft, all these changes are proof that it is really listening to (and accommodating) user feedback.

Now all we need is to wait and find out whether hardcore desktop users (the Windows 7 user base) like them enough to upgrade to the company’s newest operating system.

What about you folks? Are these customization and personalization options enough for you to make the move to Windows 8.1 if you are yet to take Microsoft’s modern platforms for a spin? Sound off in the comments section below.

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  1. You know what would have made the transition so much easier last year? Microsoft could have simply had something pop up asking “would you like to see a quick 2 minute tutorial on how do things in Windows 8?” Just showing people how to restart, log off, and get to all applications would have made a big difference for a lot of people.

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